I have people ask me all the time, how do I choose a therapist. So, today I am going to share with you my answer. You see, finding the right therapist is a lot like dating.
First, you have to find someone. Then do some internet research to see if you have similar philosophies or beliefs. If you aren't sure what yours are, find out theirs to see if it clicks for you.
Then, ask for a 10-minute consultation. This is like a first date. You ask questions to get to know their therapeutic style and to also make sure they work with what you are seeking treatment for.
Then when you get off the phone, you check in with yourself. Did you feel heard and cared about or were you just another call? If you feel like you have therapeutic chemistry after the call, schedule an appointment. If not, keep looking.
Once you have found a therapist and start seeing them, you should continue to feel validated and supported. If you are not getting what you need out of the relationship, just like dating, you ask for what you need. Even therapists can’t mind read and your side of the street is to clearly communicate what you want and need out of the relationship.
If the therapist can't give you what you need then you break up with them and start looking for a new one. You don't have to stay with a therapist just because you have been with them for a long time but as a functional adult, it is your job to ask for what you need and then communicate if your needs are not being met. Please, do not just ghost your therapist without having a conversation about why you are discontinuing services. While uncomfortable, this will give you a great opportunity to be assertive and direct while also allowing your therapist to get some feedback about ways they can grow.
See, it is a lot like dating ;).
If you want to dive into this more, I have created an amazing resource for you. This PDF includes 4 aspects to consider when choosing a therapist, questions to ask when interviewing a therapist and questions to ask yourself after the interview. To access this Free download, click here.
Jocelyn is a Licensed Professional Counselor and course creator who desires to help clients heal and grow into who God created them to be.